Drones in construction and how they are used for surveying, inspection and project management

Technology is an ever growing component of society. As we inch further into 2023, it is becoming more and more apparent that developing and implementing new and innovative types of tech is the key to improving and revolutionising the way we live and operate. It is quite clear to see the discoveries made in the 21st century have increased dramatically over this period – mostly due to the types of tech invented during the previous years which have enabled faster innovation.


Industries have also seen significant developments in technology. Nations are continuously competing for competitive advantages to create differences in accumulated knowledge and R&D. The purpose of this is to strengthen economies and enable potential paths for trade between nations. From agriculture and food manufacturing to big tech and engineering, different countries are constantly attempting to gain a foothold technology-wise in particular areas to increase economic growth. 


Australia has a vested interest in technology. With its hand in a variety of industries, it is important for Australia to maintain investment in technology in the areas of most importance. Examples of industries include mining and agriculture. 


The industry of focus is construction. Australia’s building and construction industry is one of the largest in Australia – as evidenced by the fact that the construction industry has a direct hand in influencing economic growth. When you think about infrastructure in general, you can start to see why this is the case. Infrastructure is key to society operating. It includes the structures that we use on a daily basis. Without proper infrastructure planning and objectives, towns, cities, countries etc. fail to evolve. 


Much of the work done in construction is physical. This aspect is hard to ignore especially considering the inputs required. Most jobs in building and construction need some sort of physical application. Whilst there are many benefits to this, there are also downsides. For instance, the time and resources needed to complete projects is longer, and can drastically be affected if even one hired person is unavailable. 


This is why technology is so important to construction. The implementation of tech allows for less labour to be required at different times of the day, ultimately reducing costs and project timeframes. From vehicles with parts that perform human side work, to automated machinery that can produce work a lot faster than the average human, there is much room for technology to continue to blossom in building and construction.


One such technology is drones. Drones are aerial vehicles that are remotely controlled and have hover-based qualities that enable them to rise and fall to different heights and travel varying distances. They are used for many things from mundane objectives to fulfilling work for the military.


You might be wondering what function drones could serve in building and construction. In this blog, we discuss drones in construction and how they are used for surveying, inspection and project management.


Drones have become a valuable tool in the construction industry, revolutionising the way projects are managed and completed. With their ability to capture high-resolution images and data from various angles, drones have become essential for surveying, inspection, and project management.


Drones in construction





Drones have made a significant impact on the surveying process in construction. In the past, surveyors would spend a lot of time on site manually measuring and mapping out an area. This process was not only time-consuming, but it also often resulted in inaccuracies due to human error. Drone application allows surveyors to quickly fly over a site and capture high-resolution images and data, which can be used to develop precise maps and 3D models of the area. The accuracy of this information is significantly increased with the use of drones because they can cover large areas quickly and efficiently, capturing data from various angles and heights.


The high-resolution images and data captured by drones can be used to determine the exact location of utilities, buildings, and other structures on a construction site. This information is crucial in the planning of construction projects, as it allows surveyors and project managers to identify any potential obstacles and make necessary adjustments to the plans. In addition, the use of drones has made it possible to quickly and accurately survey large construction sites, which would have been difficult and time-consuming using traditional methods.


Another advantage of using drones for surveying is the ability to easily access difficult-to-reach areas, such as the roofs of buildings or the tops of tall structures. In the past, this would require the use of scaffolding or other equipment, which was both time-consuming and potentially dangerous. With drones, surveyors can access these areas safely and efficiently, capturing high-resolution images and data that can be used to make important decisions about construction projects.





Inspection: Drones have greatly improved the inspection process in construction, making it easier, safer, and more efficient. In the past, inspections of construction sites and structures would require workers to physically climb the structures, which was a dangerous and time-consuming process. Drones combat this by allowing inspectors to fly over the structures and inspect them from a safe distance, capturing high-resolution images and data that can be used to identify any issues.


The use of drones allows inspectors to cover large areas quickly and efficiently, offering images and data from various angles and heights in return. This information is then used to identify any potential problems with the structure, such as cracks, corrosion, or damage. The high-resolution images and data captured by drones make it easier for inspectors to identify these issues, as they can be viewed in detail and analysed to determine the extent of the problem.


Inspections with drones are also safer than traditional inspections, as they eliminate the need for workers to physically climb structures. This reduces the risk of accidents and injuries, and also makes it possible to inspect structures that were previously too dangerous to access. The use of drones has also made it possible to inspect structures in remote or difficult-to-reach areas, which would have been challenging or impossible to inspect using traditional methods.


In addition, because drones have made it possible to inspect structures more frequently and with greater accuracy, this ensures the safety and longevity of the structure. The information captured by drones during inspections can then be used to make repairs or modifications, ensuring that the structure remains in good condition. This makes a significant difference in minimising the risk of potential problems and reduces the need for major repairs in the future, saving time and money in the long run.



Project Management


Project management in the construction industry has greatly benefited from the use of drones. Before the advent of drones, project managers would have to rely on ground-level observations and reports to monitor the progress of construction projects. This method was time-consuming and prone to errors, as it only provided a limited view of the project.


With the use of drones, project managers can now fly over construction sites and capture real-time images and data. This information can be used to accurately track the progress of the project, identify any potential issues, and make informed decisions on how to move forward. The aerial view provided by drones also allows project managers to easily monitor large sites, which would have been impossible using traditional methods.


In addition to improving project management, drones can also enhance communication between team members. By providing detailed, up-to-date information on the progress of a project, drones help ensure everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals. This improved communication helps to minimise misunderstandings and streamline the overall project management process.


In conclusion, drones have become an essential tool in the construction industry. They have revolutionised the way projects are managed and completed, making surveying, inspection, and project management faster, safer, and more efficient. With the continued development of drone technology, it is likely that drones will become even more integral to the construction process in the future.

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